Live Video: Ballet School

Live Video
Gerrit Feenstra
photo by Amber Zbitnoff

If you, like myself, live in 2014 but still can't get over 80s new wave, you can't get much better than Berlin band Ballet School. The band is a godsend for new wave diehards and make some of the most incredible synth pop around. But tribute isn't Ballet School's only trick in the cards - the band also writes incredible songs. Amongst the heady, neon language of songs like "Heartbeat Overdrive" and "LUX", there are well written, carefully orchestrated pop songs that deserve your full attention. Their 2014 record, The Dew Lasts An Hour, is a wonderfully crafted pop effort, and it deserves your full attention for its cold, shimmering particularity and power. Rosie Blair's impeccable Kate Bush vocals might catch your eye. Or, it might be the brilliant, echoing influence of the best of the UK 80s like the Cure and Cocteau Twins. Any way you slice it, Ballet School are worth the dive.

The band stopped by the KEXP studio a few months ago to offer us a bit of their magic before playing a Barboza set later that night. Truly, we were blown away by Ballet School's transformation from the studio setting to live. Louis McGuire's drum setup is ridiculous, playing both bass (with trigger pads) and drums at the same time, while Blair and guitarist Michel Collet rock out up front. Blair's vocals couldn't be more pitch perfect in the live setting - absolutely none of that wondrous terrain she covers is guaranteed in post production. Ballet School do it all comfortably with a three person setup, and sound incredible doing it. It just goes to show this promising young band only has more to offer as time goes on. We can't wait to have them back.

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